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The Men They Couldn't Hang - Colours lyrics

I am a member, of the council, of the naval mutineers;
And no traitor to my conscience having done my sworn duty;
These are my last words, before the scaffold, and I charge you all to hear;
How a wretched, British sailor became a citizen mutineer;
Pressed into service, to carry powder, I was loyal to the crack of the whip;
If I starved on the streets of Bristol, I starved worse on a British ship;

[chorus]
Red is the colour of the new republic
Blue is the colour of the sea
White is the colour of my innocence
Not surrender to your mercy

I was woken, from my misery, by the words of Thomas Paine;
On my barren soil they fell like the sweetest drops of rain;

Red is the colour of the new republic
Blue is the colour of the sea
White is the colour of my innocence
Not surrender to your mercy

So in the spring of the year we took the fleet;
Every cask and cannon and compass sheet;
And we flew a Jacobean flag to give us heart;
While Pitt stood helpless, we were waiting for Bonaparte

Red is the colour of the new republic
Blue is the colour of the sea
White is the colour of my innocence
Not surrender to your mercy

All you soldiers, all you sailors, all you labourers of the land;
All you beggars, all you builders, all you come here to watch me hang;
To the masters we are the rabble, we are the 'swinish multitude';
But we can re-arrange the colours of, the red and the white and the blue;

Red is the colour of the new republic
Blue is the colour of the sea
White is the colour of my innocence
Not surrender to your mercy

Red is the colour of the new republic
Blue is the colour of the sea
White is the colour of my innocence
Not surrender to your mercy